Posts Tagged ‘Pain’

Flaring! Flaring bad!

November 23, 2021

Yesterday was the perfect storm. Everything conspired against me.

  1. Poor Sleep. According to my fitbit, for the last several weeks, I’ve been getting usually between 4 & 6 hours of sleep a night, average rating poor-fair. There’s the occasional longer, better sleep in there, but not often..
  2. Forgotten Medication. When I left for the cottage early this morning, I forgot all my meds at home. Admittedly I didn’t need them all today, but there are certain ones that I do have to take at certain times for them to be effective. Unfortunately, those got left at home. I did have limited or weaker alternatives which I suppose is better than nothing.
  3. Emotional Stress. I am currently having problems with my current relationship. I’m not sure if it’s something I can handle and accept or not, so there’s alot going on there..
  4. Poor Diet. Due to the aforementioned stress, I haven’t been eating.. I haven’t been eating well & I haven’t been eating much. Neither is good, both is worse.
  5. Activity. Spent the day in bed.. with my boyfriend, not sleeping. While this is usually a good thing, due to stress, I was unable to truely relax and enjoy it. So I was getting the workout without all the longer term benefits
  6. Physical Stress. After I’d started going down hill, I had a horrible drive home. What would normally be a nice relaxing 1½ hour drive home from the cottage turned into a 3+hour nightmare. Between accidents causing an entire highway to shut down for over 14hrs, excessive detours, multiple accidents on said detours, snow.. The body begins to tense up more & more & more.. and with me being in the car I wasn’t able to like stretch or anything creating more physical stress

For the first time in over 3 years, my pain turned to a solid 8/10.

After 2+ hours, 4 Tylenol3, 4 muscle relaxers, an anti-inflammatory, my CBD oil, prescription edibles, and a backrub with A535.. the edge started to come off, but I also started feeling the effects of over medication too..

I just can’t win..

Burn the Bras!

November 12, 2021

No woman can say they love all their bras. In fact most women *hate* their bras.

With some women with fibro, especially bustier ladies like me, can not wear a bra.. We have a low tolerance for the discomfort from the shoulder straps. Yes, they dig in for every busty woman, but because we have chronic pain, we tend to feel this sort of thing more keenly.

Bra Straps can Cause Irritation, Redness, Chaffing, Friction, Bruising and Pain

The underwire is another deadly aspect of many of the current styles of bras. Yes, the wire end are rubberized to protect us, but they still jab into you. I had one that was so bad that it started ripping through the material. The smartest thing I did with that bra was to remove the underwires.. It was a whole lot more comfortable after that.

Underwires Severely Suck

Sometimes even just the strap around the ribs can be very painful. This goes for sports bras or short tank top styles aswell. I wouldn’t be surprised if that pressure is agitating a form of costochondritis.

Bands on Bras Tend to be Worn Too Tight, Mistakingly Thinking it’s Better Support Its Not & it Hurts

One last thing is that so few women are wearing the proper size of bra. And out size does change. Here is how to measure yourself for a bra:

  1. THE BAND: Measure around the body directly under the bust while wearing a bra. Round up to an even number if necessary. For example a measurement of 42″ gives a Band size of 42, but a measurement of 43” + 1”(rounding up) gives a Band size 44
  2. THE CUP: Measure around the fullest part of the bust. This is the bust line measurement. The cup size is determined by the difference between the bust line measurement and the frame size.
What is the Difference Between Your Measurement Under the Bust and Your Measurement at the Fullest Part of Your Chest

Stress Impacts the Body

November 5, 2021

You all know stress impacts the human body. No one knows this more than people with Fibromyalgia. Part of our issue is that our muscles cannot relax because of the pain signals we are receiving at all times. Add stress to that, with most common physical reaction to stress is muscle tension. So adding tension to an already agitated muscle makes for a disaster.

No one knows yet 100% of the cause of Fibro. If it’s actually a physiological issue or if it’s a neurological reaction? Either way, the addition of the tension to the already agitated muscle, skyrockets the pain, with definite real pain.. Not just a neurological misfire that we could potentially be having.

And before anyone says I’m minimizing pain, I am not. People with fibromyalgia feel pain every single day. – it’s the cause we don’t know. We don’t know if the cause is something physical in the muscles, we don’t know if it’s part of the nerve chain or even something in the brain. We.just don’t know And as many of you know, I’m in a remission with my Fibro. I still feel pain, but I’m better managed and had made alot of changes a few years back. As a result, my pain levels rarely rate over a 5 – right now. I have, in the past, been bed bound. So I’ve been at both ends of the spectrum. I am the last person to downplay anyone’s pain let alone someone with Fibromyalgia.

But back to stress… I’ve been dealing with some pretty intense issues lately.. The big 2: 1. Problems with my Mom & our relationship.. 2. Issues with the guy I’m seeing – relationship may be ending. And I don’t think either one reads this blog. Those are the big ones but there is always in additional normal day to day stresses..

So….. On Monday night I had a breakdown. A complete emotional & mental breakdown (this does not include the meltdown I had earlier that day). I was in such hysterics that at times I could barely breathe.. You also don’t want to see what my kitchen looks like, cuz it all hit me as I was cooking stir-fry, which means three pots on the stove, each carefully times so everything finished hot at the same time. Interestingly enough I could feel myself deteriorating and the rice was pretty much done, the meat was pretty much done and the vegetables were almost done so I took the presence of mind to grab storage containers and just put everything in the fridge because there was no way I was going to be able to eat it and I have no family to feed. But I didn’t give myself enough leeway and ended up destroying the contents of the shelves with the storage containers.. Apparently I have a decent arm because I found, after the fact, empty storage containers or lids in my dining area, my office area, one almost in the living room and also my bedroom.

I ended up calling the local mental health line & spoke with a gentleman named Craig who listened & offered support..Initially, my mind had been racing with a lot of dark negative thoughts.. But I finally got calmed down enough after over an hour of venting. & I was no longer in that dark and twisted headspace.

I woke up Tuesday morning physically & emotionally wiped. Unfortunately this was one of the days that I just can’t say no. I had to drop my mom off at her doctor’s appointments because she no longer drives. I still also had to finish prepping my Cub Scout meeting.. Which meant I also had to run my Cub Scout meeting because this week got dropped in my lap on Sunday. The meeting went well and I was able to get out of my head for almost 2 hours not thinking about those big two issues. By the time I got home in the evening after my meeting, I stripped down, showered, got extra medicated and watched some mindless TV. That’s all my body would let me do – I pretty much hit the wall. Oh & eat some of the stir fry from the night before – lol.

And this excessive physical reaction is 100% due to stress exasperating the Fibromyalgia and some of my ppother chronic pain issues.

What *Is* a Flare Like?

October 26, 2021

This is very hard to explain as each one is different.

A flare can vary in duration, intensity, symptoms, triggers

A flare can last for a few hours, a few days, a few weeks, or even months.. Possibly years..

A flare can simply be a temporary exacerbation of symptoms that can be treated reasonably easily through medication and rest. A flare however can also be a debilitating excruciating exhausting with a skyrocketing increase in symptoms.

A flare could be pain, fatigue, insomnia, significant cognitive impairment, muscle spasms or charlie horses, IBS/IBD inflammation, exacerbation of sensitivities to food, smells, touch, less severe symptoms include body temperatures fluctuations, nausea, RLS, TMJ, dizziness/lightheadedness, costochondritis, headaches or migraines, numbness & paraesthesia

I am not including depression in this list despite the fact that many will think that yes this is part of a flare. For some it may be but for me my depression is not related to the fibromyalgia so much but the limitations of the flare in physical activity, mental stimulation and socialization.

With all the symptoms listed above a pain flare is different, day by day, hour by hour, trigger dependent and with various possible causes, intensity.

For example, one person might have issues with increased migraines and fatigue.. Another might have a flare in IBS/IBD symptoms, or muscular pain or cognitive issues. No 2 are ever alike.

The Princess & the Pea

October 1, 2021

For those not familiar with the story. See Below. It was also made into a movie in ’02.

The princess slept on a pile of twenty mattresses and twenty feather beds and still did not sleep well due to the small pee in the middle of the bed under all those mattresses .

I am convinced that the princess in this story had some sort of chronic illness.. From the description, she could have any of the following: Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, CFS/ME, Rheumatoid or Osteo- Arthritis, Allodynia, Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, Sensory Processing Disorder (In conjunction with or due these other conditions.

The American National Library of Medicine says “Possibly the princess in Hans Christian Andersen’s ‘The Princess and the Pea’ suffered from FMS since chronic sleep disturbances are typical in FMS. These sleep disturbances have been attributed to a dysfunction in the systems regulating sleep and wakefulness resulting in loss of deep sleep. ” That can be said about the other conditions I mentioned as well..

If you do a search of “The Princess and the Pea, chronic illness”, you will get a long list of articles believing that the lass in the story wasn’t just ‘sensitive’, but had a chronic illness. While all of the conditions I mentioned above, it seems Fibromyalgia to be the most common conspiracy theory..

What do you think? Does she have a chronic illness? Which one?


The Story – The Princess and the Pea

A pile of 40 mattresses with a pra under the bottom one

Once upon a time, there was a prince who lived in a wealthy kingdom. When he had reached the proper age, his mother, the queen, decided the time was right for her son to find a bride.

The prince, however was determined not to marry just any girl, but that his future wife should be a “real” princess. So he traveled the world and searched in all the kingdoms and met with all the princesses, but he still wasn’t satisfied.

One evening there brewed a terrible storm, with thunder, lightning, and rain. It was really frightful! In the midst of it all came a knock at the town gate. The old king went to open it.Who should be standing outside but a young lass, and what a sight she was in all that rain and wind. Water streamed from her hair down her clothes into her shoes, and ran out in the heals.

She claimed to be a real Princess. Although no one believed her, she was invited in to stay for the night.

The queen decided to test the young girl’s claim of nobility – without saying a word, the queen went to the bedroom stripped back the bedclothes, and put a single pea in the bottom of the bed. The queen then took 20 mattresses and stacked them on top of the pea and took 20 eiderdown feather beds and piled them on the mattresses. Up on top of all these the princess was to spend the night.

The next morning when the girl woke up, the queen asked how she slept. “Oh very poorly!” she said. “I scarcely closed my eyes all night. Heaven only knows what was in the bed, but I was lying on something hard, and now I am black and blue all over my body. It’s horrible!”“

They saw at once that she must be a real princess when she had felt the pea through twenty mattresses and twenty feather beds. Nobody but a real princess could have such a delicate skin.So the prince took her to be his wife, for now he was sure that he had found a real princess

Food Choices with Fibro VII

September 28, 2021

The study also showed that low alcohol drinkers have lower severity of fibromyalgia symptoms and better quality of life than non-drinkers.

Alcohol intolerance is a rarely seen symptom yet most people who have FM or ME/CFS find that they can no longer drink much, if any, alcohol.

Alcohol, no matter the kind, can be devastating to Fibromites.

While a few are able to occasionally have one or two drinks with only minimal problems, for others even a very small alcoholic beverage can trigger a severe flare or relapse that may last for days, weeks or sometimes even months.

So, for most, alcohol is so obvious that it’s was not even originally in the list. So, you have to stop drinking alcohol.

On that note, I also have a fairly high alcohol tolerance (when not mixed with THC) that I inherited from my father.. I used to be able to drink most of my friends under the table.. For the most part I still can. But I have noticed at the club I am toast for days afterwards but have since realized that it’s the dancing at the club, not the alcohol that is responsible for that.. My BFF, as she has increased in weight has been slowly had her alcohol tolerance increase. I don’t know if she realizes that it from the weight gain & when she loses it again her tolerance will drop. ☹️

My Hair Hurts

September 17, 2021

I owe an apology to many of the ladies is some of the various fibro Facebook groups I’ve been it. There have been many conversations over the years about Fibromites whose *hair* hurts. Turns out it’s a form of allodynia

I always assumed that they were talking about head pain but not the sensation that it actually does feel like your hair actually hurts – not your scalp. You see, over the years I have had a bunch of concussions.. Three of those concussion inflame on occassion, so I will have swelling & tender points on my scalp. I can even tell which incident it was.. One of my bike accidents? Falling on the ice at school? Accidentally bashing my head against a wall?

Well, nope, that is not the feeling it turns out. Those repetitive reactions are *not* what these women mean. I found that out today.

I was brushing my hair like I normally do, and decided to wash my hair. When I do this because my hair is so thick I tend to flip my hair over and back brush to get the hair to relax so I can more effectively clean it. Well my head felt weird bending over and putting my hair down.. I started your back brush from the base of my skull and I was good until I got about 4 in down then – Oh! My! God!! My hair was in agony.. Not my scalp – My Hair!

So I stopped brushing my hair stood up flipping my hair back & again – Oh My God! More excruciating pain. I had to have a shower because I was stinky from heat sweat, I still had to do something with my hair. I put it in a quick loose bun that was clipped in not elasticized in.. I found that was the least painful option for hopping into the shower..

I can still brush my hair normally and it doesn’t bother me but if I could try to do anything else for my hair right now, I’m f**ked..

So I owe these ladies an apology cuz I was thinking their issue was not so bad cuz my version wasn’t too bad. I should know better.. Cuz my Fibro is not her Fibro & her Fibro is not my Fibro.

A little research yeilded this information:

Apparently the number one culprit for this kind of pain is not washing your hair.. The oils that your scalp produces naturally accumulate around your hair shaft, and if not cleaned can promote an overgrowth of yeast on the scalp. It is apparently the region around each hair, pore, or follicle that is becoming inflamed, which translates to sensitivity that can feel like your hair hurts.

Wearing your hair in the same style, like a high ponytail, cornrows, buns, or braids for days at a time, can also contribute to more pain.

How can we help it? It all depends on what hair type you’re starting off with. Finer hair can’t go multiple days, because it produces more oil, Yet curly or gray hair can, as it produces less. As a rule of thumb, people with oily hair should shampoo every day or every other day. Dry or coarser hair should do every three to four days.

I know we tend to be exhausted an washing one’s hair is an exhausting chore, but consider that it might be worth it.

Following Doctor’s Orders

August 27, 2021

Previously, i had posted about my pain physician limiting my physical activities – not allowed to go to Cub/Scout camp. . I wrote about why & here’s a quick summary from the post

My pain was creeping up and Iwasn’t doing anything to rest. After spiking again last weekend, I had a regularly scheduled appointment with my pain doc. She reviewed my comments & my paperwork and we had a discussion She said that I was overdoing it & if I kept pushing I was going to significantly hurt myself, possibly slamming right out of my semi-remission. So, she said “No, you are not to go.”

My Pain Doctor *ordered* me to not go to Cub/Scout Camp.

So my Doctor said no, & I’m glad she did! Cuz she was right.

Last Thursday I helped the Howlers clean off the canoes so they could use them. (We don’t wanna contaminate the algae or other slime or bugs of one body of water to a new environment)

On Friday afternoon I helped get everyone off, including the trailers for the canoes & equipment.

Cubs At Camp

On Saturday, I finally woke at 10am on 6 hours sleep cuz my pain was keeping me up. Unfortunately, I woke in more pain than I fell asleep in.

i have a pattern – I feel worse first thing & feel good until I approach bed time.. I hurt in the morning because I’m still – I haven’t been moving or stimulating my muscles while I sleep unless of my restless legs are keeping me up of course. When bedtime approaches, I start too slow down and that makes me more aware of my body and the pain and inflammation that I’ve been ignoring comes to light. I have always been like this as a kid – I would be ill, but better in the evenings & want to go to guides or soccer or dance…

Instead of Cub Camp, Saturday activities ended up included folding laundry and reading a book in the lounger in the backyard. Not alot of activity.

So I went to bed on Saturday night in lots of pain. Woke up Sunday with lots of pain.

Sunday required me to pack for the cottage, which was fun..it took me several hours to get my stuff organized & packed (yet still left swimsuits at home).. Imagine, had I gone to camp, how much pain I would be in. Packing up Sunday morning and making a 4 hour drive home, then unpacking equipment at our storage area. Afterwards, add in me trying to unpack from camp, do some laundry and then repack for the cottage all in a few hours then drive almost 2 hours up here..

imagine if I had tried to do camp, I would not have been able to pack for the cottage, let alone make it here for at least 2 days, possibly up to 4 or 5..

So, as the days have progressed, I’m having to be careful.. We (Lilly & I) ran errands on Tuesday, and spontaneously stopped at a local conservation area to take the pup for a walk (6 km later we are both dying) .. I walked around in the cool lake water to help the pain and heat in my leggs as well as a quick dip for Lil for that & heat relief… It helped a bit..

We took Wednesday easy.. Went about 500m in the kayak before I remembered I had a webinar in 20 minutes! & that was my exercise.. And yesterday I crashed out.. not even making it outta bed until 7 – in the evening..

So while, besides yesterday, I’m doing “ok”.. I was managing pain at about a 4/10. Imagine where I would have been had I gone to camp.. Besides packing, I’d be driving 4 hours to the camp ground, help set up three sites, including tents, kitchens and shelter. Poor sleep Friday night would almost be a given, but up between 7am & 8am for breakfast & on my feet going all day, including canoeing with the kids, hiking, games, skills training, archery, helping with 3 meals a day in some capacity, etc. No breaks, no stops, no naps untill after campfire, if I made it that long, starting at 9:30-10pm start.. so in bed for midnight.

Cubs & Scouts Camping c at Camp Impressa

Sunday would have consisted of breakfast & packing the equipment all up & reorganizing the trailer. Then the 4 hour drive back as I mentioned earlier..

if you add all that activity on minimum sleep, are you really all that surprised that I would have crashed on Monday. Which I kind of did anyways just from packing up with the cottage.. if without that activity my pain levels are at a 4, maybe 5. Imagine what level I would have been at had I actually participated. I figure probably near 9/10 and I tend to go to the ER between the levels of 7 and 8!

Normally, if I’m ‘well’ I can do camp Friday – Sunday, then crash for 2 days.. but I can normally make it through camp.. but I wasn’t starting at ‘well’..

So, yeah I am so glad my pain doc ordered me to stay home..

It Finally Happened Again

August 13, 2021

So on Friday or late Thursday my sciatica flared up, because of my osteoarthritis… And with Cub camp on Saturday there is no way I would have been able to function.

So I went to the ER, the first time since covid started, and possibly even the first time in 2 years…

Previously when I went to Lakeridge health Oshawa I was expecting compassion, respect and dignity. I’m sure if you go back far enough you will see posts of getting policy changed in the Scarborough hospitals.

On Friday the first thing the doctor said to me was “So I hear you can’t afford Toradol?”” well that’s professional. He agrees to give me some Toradol after I saw I don’t want narcotics.. Toradol in an anti-inflammatory..

Every other time I’ve gone to the emergency department in the hospital, but Centenary, Scarborough Gen, or Lakeridge Health Oshawa I have been given an injection of 30 mg of Toradol. Frequently I am also given another 30 mg tablet to take it home later. And occasionally the doctors do offer me a muscle relaxer as well

All I got on Friday for a chronic pain flare bad enough for me to drag my ass to an emergency department in a pandemic was 10mg of Toradol. There is absolutely no way that someone with chronic pain, specifically in a flare with pain spiking, the 10 f****** mg of Toradol is going to do anything.

The one thing it did, was put me in tears.

I ended overdosing on naproxen at home just to get enough relief so that I could work with my Cub Scouts the next day.


Before some dough head makes a comment about me being a Scouter while having chronic pain. If I didn’t do anything because I had pain I wouldn’t be doing anything at all – I’d be a freaking hermit. And I’m very much enjoy working with the kids to allow that.

And before someone else says let somebody else run the meeting, I was the Scouter in Charge on Saturday. I was the one who actually knew exactly what we were doing, leading several of the activities & the only one familiar enough with the area to run a hike… I am also the one who, if something happened, I would be the one responsible whether I was there or not. So you damn straight I’m going to make it up to the day.

RLS then Exercise.. Uh oh!!!

June 29, 2021

On Friday last week, I posted about issues with my RLS, but that wasn’t the end of it.

As I said, on Wednesday night I was having problems getting to sleep, big problems due to restless leg syndrome in all four limbs – very rare. So I went on the treadmill for 20 minutes then snuggled nicely into bed.

Walking on a treadmill can help burn off the restless feeling when my RLS flares.

Thursday morning, I woke up & my legs had felt like I’d run before full marathon with zero prep the day before, instead of just 20 minutes.

So I started with the pain meds, the anti-inflammatories and the muscle relaxers that I do every day when I get up. The unexpected pain did eventually start to lessen more.

But Thursday nights are one of my cub nights with my third years, howlers from both packs. We’re helping them work on their Seeonee Award.

Fortunately, when this meeting was planned we weren’t aware if we were going to be in person or not so we planned a virtual meeting. The kids wanted to play Drawsaurus which is an online version of Pictionary. Lots of fun!

Drawsaurus is an online version of Pictionary! The boys love it!

So I didn’t have to do anything. I did not have to prep much, other than just set up the game which took about 30 seconds. We played 4-5 rounds I believe. We could do this because it was a smaller group, just the four of them tonight.

So as we started we are having fun and I’m relaxing. Silly me, I text my sister and ask her if she wants to go walking tonight after my meeting, which we normally do on Thursdays.. Of course she responded in the affirmative.

I was actually starting to feel better at the end of the meeting – Yay!!

I make it to my sister’s for 9:00pm and we leave shortly thereafter walking the dogs. Our pups were both very well behaved tonight, strangely enough – they usually do not start calm & maintain that for most of the walk.

So our walk was uneventful and we walked the neighborhood just south west of us. There was nothing extraordinary about our walk in the way of physical exertion.

There was a coyote but that’s a different story altogether.

One thing about that walk however was the length. It was almost 11:00pm by the time we got back to her house. In steps that is over 10,000 and about 5½ miles (no clue why my Fitbit is still in miles)

God Help Me! Five miles & 11,000 steps for one casual walk.

So take a guess how I felt afterwards. Horrible! My leggs were very painful. I’m thinking a 6 or 7 out of 10 on my pain scale..

I had a shower and the hot water was lovely- everything seemed to relax under the hot spray. Unfortunately it would return when the heat got moved to another spot. I think I need to go snorkeling in a hot tub! LOL..

So I medicated again, including my MMJ…

Guess how I felt the next day…


I was actually expecting to be in a flare the next morning… Surprisingly, my Leggs were sore.. pain at a 3, 3½.. was expecting 7 or so.

So, Yay! Not as bad as anticipated!